ABS Introduces Industry’s Most Comprehensive Standards to Support Safe and Efficient Adoption of New Technology

Best-in-Class Rule Enhancements Result of Multi-Year Industry Collaboration

(HOUSTON) In an industry first, ABS has introduced a comprehensive approach to support development of the next generation of designs and equipment employing the latest technology driven by decarbonization and digitalization.

ABS Marine Vessel Rules now include an extensive set of newly developed functional requirements and a standardized risk-based methodology which provides a path for class approval. These rule enhancements are a result of a multi-year collaboration with industry, shipyards, owners, equipment manufacturers, designers and regulators.

“ABS’ rules are built to adapt to a new and dynamic technological world,” said Christopher J. Wiernicki, Chairman and CEO of ABS. “By enhancing our rules with risk-based requirements and strengthening our technical content to add functional requirements aligned to prescriptive criteria, ABS enables the safe and rapid adoption of innovation and technology to support our clients’ and the maritime industry’s evolving decarbonization and digital ambitions.”

Under key safety and environmental objectives, the rules introduce categories of critical ship design elements, each underpinned by detailed functional requirements, which are comprehensive, easily accessible and provide clear technical guidance.

Alternative arrangements and new technologies may be accepted if designers, shipyards, owners, equipment manufacturers or others demonstrate compliance with the functional requirements. Applicable ABS prescriptive rules remain in place for conventional designs, technologies and arrangements that follow the traditional approval process.

“The new and improved interface for ABS rules helps simplify and clarify class requirements, preventing any interruptions in the plan review process. This risk-based approach allows us to innovate with confidence and incorporate new technology,” Seung-Ho Jeon, Senior Executive Vice President and Chief Technology Officer, HD Hyundai Heavy Industries.

Introduction of ABS’ approach for new technology and alternative arrangements is part of a series of enhancements ABS has made to its industry-leading rules and guides featuring a new, easily accessible and improved format with updated graphics, enhanced search capabilities, and greater transparency and clarity into technical criteria with the addition of more commentary, technical background and functional guidance to assist clients.

These updates follow enhancements made in 2023 where ABS launched industry’s only Custom Rule Book application, a powerful new tool which allows users to instantly create tailored rules sets for their specific vessel or project. Explore ABS’ latest rule enhancements here.


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